Daniel Wells sent the following along:
Just got back from the Smackdown show in Charlotte. Fun show. Here are some highlights.
-Entire upper deck was tarped off. 2 years ago when Raw was here, the entire arena was filled. Not sure if Smackdown being the ‘B’ show it draws a smaller crowd, or the economy is tough, or if people just attend less events.
-Tons of kids. Lots of Cena, Punk shirts and some Ryder merch floating around. Although, no Ryder merch was for sale at the venders. Sin Cara masks and shirts for sale even though he is hurt.
-Several “We Want Ryder” chants throughout the night.
-NXT and Superstars were taped. Nothing much to report. Took a while for crowd to get into it. Ted Dibiase’s presence on Superstars helped warm the crowd a bit.
-Surprisingly, Mick Foley didn’t receive a huge pop when we made his way out to start Smackdown. That may have been because he didn’t come out to his theme music, and young kids don’t know him well. Once he got in the ring, the crowd got more into him.
-Cody Rhodes had GOOD heat.
-Kofi Kingston had a huge pop. Probably because he was the first major face to make an appearance in the ring. People were into him.
-Orton had biggest pop of the night, no surprise. I for one thought he did a good job making a PG street fight with a cartoonish setting be entertaining. He has good charisma and personality, contra what some IWC critics claim.
-Sheamus didn’t get quite the reaction I thought he would get. But that may have been because his music was low and his Titantron video seemed off.
-Hornswoggle winning made kids happy but adults ticked. The bit at the end between Sheamus and Hornswoggle went too long for the crowd’s taste.
-Daniel Bryan’s reaction wasn’t very positive, at least at first. When they showed his picture on the Titantron you had some cheers (not very loud) and a trail of booos. Even some kids were boo’ing him His entrance for the main event had a minimal reaction (less than Kofi Kingston). During the match, some Daniel Bryan cheers were started (even if small). Not sure if his lack of TV time or his blunder last week had anything to do with it.
-Dark match main event was Henry versus Orton, still in the cage. Orton received another huge pop. Wade Barrett came down and interfered, allowing Henry to win. Barrett and Orton fought a bit and Orton eventually fended him off and hit the RKO to send the crowd home happy as he posed atop the cage.
A fun evening, though it is hard to get into a WWE event when your three most popular superstars (Cena, Punk, Ryder) are absent. Orton is popular, but Cena, Punk, Ryder add more to a show. Even just a Ryder appearance would have done this show wonders.